From the award-winning pens of Kim Iverson Headlee and short-fiction veteran Patricia Duffy Novak come this darkly humorous mage-out-of-water tale:
A funny thing happened on the way to the battlefield.
Arthur, High King of Brydein, must fight the last of the rebel kings to acknowledge his right to govern them all: his old nemesis, King Urien of Dalriada. Before he can lead his army to where Urien’s forces sit ensconced, however, a fey man appears from the midst of a sudden, eerie storm to block the way. The man claims to be the high king of an altogether unknown land... and he wields uncanny power the likes of which Arthur has never seen.
Garrin, High King of Helvar, steps into a patch of mist. A breath later, he’s standing toe to toe with a man claiming to be the high king of an altogether unknown land... and this warrior-king is leading an army into Helvar, wielding a sword that resists Garrin’s magic. Only, the man insists that his sword isn’t enchanted and that Garrin isn’t in Helvar anymore.
What the bloody hell—or five hells, in Garrin’s case—is a high king to do?
Their encounter reeks of an enemy mage’s dark arts, and no one is laughing.
How hard would you fight for a chance at impossible love?
“Epic.” ~ Drue’s Random Chatter Reviews.
From the critically acclaimed, award-winning pen of Kim Iverson Headlee comes the thrilling, poignant tale of love across a vast social divide.
Betrayed by her father and sold as payment of a Roman tax debt to fight in Londinium's arena, gladiatrix-slave Rhyddes feels like a wild beast in a gilded cage. Celtic warrior blood flows in her veins, but Roman masters own her body. She clings to her vow that no man shall claim her soul, though Marcus Calpurnius Aquila, son of the Roman governor, makes her yearn for a love she believes impossible.
Groomed to follow in his father’s footsteps and trapped in a politically advantageous betrothal, Aquila prefers the purity of combat on the amphitheater sands to the sinister intrigues of imperial politics, and the raw power and athletic grace of the flame-haired Libertas to the adoring deference of Rome's noblewomen.
When a plot to overthrow Caesar ensnares them as pawns in the dark design, Aquila must choose between the Celtic slave who has won his heart and the empire to which they both owe allegiance. Trusting no man and knowing the opposite of obedience is death, the only liberty offered to any slave, Rhyddes must embrace her arena name, Libertas—and the love of a man willing to sacrifice everything to forge a future with her.